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$10 Million Donation Launches Wharton’s Alternative Investments Program

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School is launching a new program focused on alternative investments, thanks to a $10 million gift from undergraduate alum Josh Harris and his wife Marjorie Harris. 

Harris’s gift establishes the Joshua J. Harris Alternative Investments Program, which will host events and create learning opportunities for Wharton students related to alternative investments.

The program has already announced the launch of its blockchain venture, which plans to sponsor a research series, a fireside chat series, a collaboration with Penn Blockchain, and a “Blockchain Working Group.”

Harris is a fitting namesake for the alternative investments program. An alum of Wharton’s undergrad program and Harvard Business School’s MBA program, Harris founded Apollo Global Management, an alternative asset management firm that took in $2.61 billion in revenue in 2017. 

Wharton’s dean, Geoffrey Garrett, described Harris as an “alternative investments trailblazer” and said the school “couldn’t be happier to have this program carry the Harris name.” 

Harris, who is on Wharton’s Board of Overseers, adds to the school’s More Than Ever fundraising haul with his $10 million contribution. The school has now raised over $720 million on the way to its ultimate $1 billion goal. 

Harris praised Wharton students as being “creative, entrepreneurial, and eager for new challenges,” explaining that the new program would give students interested in alternative investments “unprecedented resources to enrich their understanding of the industry.” 

Previously, Josh and Marjorie Harris have contributed an endowed scholarship and an endowed professorship to Wharton. Harris, who was on Penn’s wrestling team as an undergrad, has also given to the school’s wrestling program.

He is now managing partner of the Philadelphia 76ers basketball team and a managing member of the New Jersey Devils hockey team.

With their latest contribution, the Harris family strengthens Wharton’s profile as a business school for MBA candidates interested in alternative investments.

In consistently ranking as one of the country’s top B-schools, and in now having an endowed alternative investments program, Wharton is likely to be a top pick for applicants with a focus on alternative investments.

Of course, Wharton is already a highly competitive MBA program. If you’re wondering how your application stacks up at a school like Wharton and how you can present a personal brand that stands out to Wharton’s adcom, we can help you evaluate those questions. Just ask us for a free application assessment!